Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Chicken In Milk

It is my first time using sage leaves for cooking. These leaves have quite a strong scent, I remember putting these leaves into a plastic bag after getting them from Wendy's garden and put the bag in my carfront and my car was like instantly aromatised by these herbs even with just a few sprigs of them.

I"ve not had much idea what to do with the leaves and was recommended to cook this chicken in milk. You know, sometimes i can be quite "chinese", when it comes to eating, not in desserts though but i was a little sceptical about the taste of the chicken cooking with milk and cream, i'm not sure if i like the taste but hey, i
thought there's nothing to lose just trying it out.

I had no regrets making this and the most delicious thing about this dish is the slightly saltish milky curd and also the chicken, its skin especially, it's crispy and well flavoured. Spoon some curd over the chicken meat with each bite, it's tasty! One thing is i think i had put in a little more sage then required, one big handful of sages which the flavour gets a little too strong for me, the next time i make this, i will have to go really easy with the sage.

Recipe (from Table for 2 or more with modified recipe from Jamie Oliver.com ), with slight changes
1 chicken, mine about 950gms, halved, rubbed with salt and black pepper all over
11/4 cup milk
1/4 cup dairy cream
3 sprigs of sage leaves
8 cloves garlic
zest of one lemon
2inch cinnamon stick
60gm butter and some olive oil for frying

1.Marinate the chicken with salt and pepper for 30 minutes.
2. In a pan, put in the butter and some olive oil , put in the chicken with skin side down and fry till the skin turns golden brown. Remove chicken to your cooking tray, do not put in the butter and oil from the pan.
3. Combine milk, cream, lemon zest, sage and pour all over chicken and put in the cinnamon stick and garlic cloves.Cook in a preheated oven at 190C for 1.5 hours until the milk looks like curd.

I also know that two of my other blogger friends, Jeannie and Riceball also made these recently. You can have a look at theirs too. I am submitting this to Cook Like A Star( July 2012 ) - Jamie Oliver hosted by Zoe

and also sharing with Recipe Box 7 hosted by Bizzy Bakes

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Chicken Curry Hand Pies

We are making chicken pies as the theme for our bake along this week. If you have a favourite chicken pie recipe that you've been making for several years that you would like to share, make some and link it to our event this week. If you have not attempted to make one yet, you still have a week to 'rush' to make, any versions..we would all love to have you share with us here.

I wanted to make some small chicken pies, one that probably just be eaten in two bites..that's it. I made some curry chicken as filling, dont get misled by the word 'curry'  it is not the hot spicy curry chicken that most Malaysians like to cook at home, i used 'Waugh' curry powder..this curry powder taste very different from our local curry powder. I bought a bottle of this recently intended to make some pork ribs. But i have not made my pork ribs yet..this comes first. This curry powder is not spicy type..not at all.. i dont think i will use this for my usual curry chicken but i chose to use this for my pies today, it's a trial really. I also added in a small slice of cheddar cheese in it ..let them melt into the filling..first bite into these buttery flaky pies, shockingly good, second bite..my eyes were sparkling and the third bite, go get another one!

cut out rounds using a 6cm round cutter

put in filling and a small slice of cheese

Recipe for chicken pie filling
( with a few tbsp fillings left for 8 pies)
1 large potato, cubed, mine about 110gms
175gm diced chicken fillet
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp soya sauce
1tsp Waugh curry powder

1.Fry the potatoes in a wok or skillet till they become a little soft, put in the chicken fillets , salt, soya sauce and curry powder and fry them till chicken is cooked. Add in water by the tablespoon if they appear very dry and to cook the chicken. Remove and set them aside

Buttery Pie crust ( from simplyrecipes.com )
makes 8 small pies with upper and bottom crust
156gm flour
113gm cold butter
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
3-5 tbsp ice water

half slice of cheddar cheese, cut into small pieces
egg wash for glazing and sealing

1.Combine flour, salt and sugar in a food processor and pulse to mix. Add butter , pulse 6-8 times till mixtures resembles coarse meal. Add cold water by the tablespoon, pulsing till mixture just comes together. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it comes together, it's ready.If the dough doesnt hold together, add a little more water and pulse again. Too much water will result in a tough dough.
2.Remove to a clean surface and shape into a disc, sprinkle with some flour and keep in the fridge for at least an hour or up to 2 days.
3. Remove dough from fridge and let it sit for 10 minutes to soften the dough for easy rolling. Roll the dough out to about 1/2inch thick. Using a 6cm round cutter, cut the dough out. Place some filling on to a piece of dough, put in a small piece of cheddar cheese and cover with another piece of dough, you can choose to brush the edges of the top dough with egg wash and then using a fork to press to seal the dough together. Glaze the top with some egg was and poke some holes on top. Repeat with the rest.
4.Bake in a preheated oven at 195C for 25 minutes or till they turn golden.

Also sharing this with  Recipe box 7 hosted by Bizzy Bakes

Let's also see JoyceZoe and also the rest who have joined us making chicken pies. This linky will be closed on August 01, 2012.

get the InLinkz code

Monday, July 23, 2012

Ham and Cheese Stromboli ( JO Pizza Dough)

When i was still looking for a Jamie Oliver's recipe to participate in my buddy, Zoe's event, Cook Like A Star, i came upon Jeannie's post on her  Dates Bread Loaf using JO's pizza dough recipe. How yummy that looks and so fluffy by using a pizza dough and as i read further, i understand that the dough can be stored in fridge or freezer after making its first proof meaning that we dont have to shape or prebake the crust first, just dump the dough for refrigeration for later use. I like that because that really saves time, i want to make a few and keep in my fridge. I made half of the JO's original recipe and divided that into 4 separate doughs. This is what i came up with using one portion of the dough, after sits overnight in the fridge..a Ham Stromboli, together with a couple more of ingredients like sundried tomatoes, capsicum and cheese.

Jamie Oliver's Pizza Dough Recipe ( from here )
makes 4 portions, each portion about 6.6oz after proof
500gms bread flour /00 flour ( i used 00 flour)
1.5 tbsp sea salt
7gm of instant yeast ( i used 10gm)
1/2 tbsp caster sugar
2tbsps extra virgin olive oil
325ml lukewarm water

1.In a jug, mix the olive oil, sugar and yeast into water and leave for a few minutes.
2.In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt  using a fork to stir to mix, then attach the dough hook and let it run on low speed. Slowly pour in the yeast mixture till the everything comes to a rough dough and continue beating till the dough is smooth. I let them beat on medium speed for about 8 minutes.
3.Remove the dough and transfer it to a lightly floured surface, shape them into a ball and let it proof in a big bowl till double its size. After proofing, you can use the dough immediately or store them in fridge or freezer ( in clingwrap) until required.

Ham and Cheese Stromboli ( idea from BHG magazine )
4 pieces of ham
5 pieces of sundried tomatoes ( cut into small pieces)
a small portion of red or green capsicum, chopped into pieces
some mozarella cheese, shredded
black pepper
egg wash

1.Preheat oven to 190C, lined your baking tray and sprinkle some cornmeal
2.Dust the working surface with some flour and rolling pin, roll out the dough into a rectangle shape, 9" X6.5"
Arrange ham slices on dough, leaving about 1/2 inch on border, sprinkle with some cheese, follow by sundried tomatoes and capsicum , sprinkle some black pepper and another layer of remaining cheese. Starting from the long side of the dough, roll them up into a log, pinch the ends to seal.
3.Place loaf, seam side down onto the baking tray, brush with egg. Using a sharp knife, cut slits on top for steam to escape, bake for about 25-30 minutes or until golden. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting to serve.

I'm submitting this to Cook Like A Star ( Jamie Oliver ) -July 2012 hosted by Bake for Happy Kids
also linking it to Recipe box Linky 6 hosted by Bizzy Bakes
and BYOB -Bake Your Own Bread hosted by Girlichef

Friday, July 20, 2012

Mocha Cappucino Marbled Coffee Cake and Malaysian Food Fest

Time really passes by so quickly that it's due for another cake again at The Home Bakers ( THB ), an event organised by Joyce.  I just realised that this cake is due to post today and it's my turn to provide the recipe this time, therefore i quickly made this 3 days ago. Well actually, we can post anytime 30days from today but due to the reason that i'm giving out the recipe, i will  have to post it up today otherwise i'll get spanked by Joyce. This is the 6th cake so far that we are baking from the book, Coffee Cakes by Lou Seibert Pappas. I'm very pleased with the outcome of the cake, though nothing really fancy, it's a coffee flavoured cake with some chocolate marbles within the cake, the texture is soft and light, it isnt dry, nice coffee flavour and love it. You are welcomed to take a look at the same cake made by other members of the group here

I have made half the recipe in a 7 inch round tin and kindly note that i'm providing the full recipe and also half recipe here, the halved recipe is in blue.

12tbsp (1.5 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature  85gm
1.5cup sugar  120gm
3 large eggs  2 eggs
1.5tsp vanilla extract   a little more than 1/2 tsp
2 tbsp instant coffee powder dissolved in 2 tbsp hot water
1tbsp mocca coffee granules dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water
2.5cups unbleached all purpose flour   156gm cake flour
1.5tsp baking powder   1tsp
3/4tsp baking soda     1/4tsp  
1/4tsp salt    1/8 tsp 
11/4cup sour cream    1/2+1/8cup yogurt
2ounces unsweetened chocolate , melted  1ounce

Preheat oven to 350F/176C. Butter and flour a 10inch Bundt or tube pan.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, beat in the eggs, one at a time and mix in the vanilla and the dissolved coffee until blended.

In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt, stir to blend. Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture alternately with the sour cream in 2 increments, beating until thick and smooth.  Spoon 1/3 of the batter into a small bowl and stir in the melted chocolate. Spoon 4 heaping tbps of coffee batter into the pan, spacing them apart, then spoon some chocolate batter by the tablespoon into the spaces. Repeat until all batter is used. With a knife, swirl through th emixture to marble the batters.

Bake for 55minutes to 1 hour ( i baked mine for about 42 mins) or until a cake tester insered in the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 15minutes, then unmould, let cool completely before cutting into slices.

At the same time, i would like to inform there is an upcoming event to be launched this coming August 2012,  Malaysian Food Fest organised by Wendy from Table for 2..or more. It is an online event whereby its main objectives are to introduce the specialty food from each state in Malaysia and to encourage everyone to cook those at home. For each state, the event will run for a month and the whole event will conclude by the end of August 2013. We encourage everyone, bloggers and non bloggers , Malaysians or non Malaysians to take part in this meaningful event , cook and submit your entries to the respective hosts for the month. The first state that's going to kick off will be Malacca, hosted by Cindy from Yummylittlecooks. You can find out more information about the event here and the schedule ahead here

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Stir fry Bittergourd with Prawns and a Gathering

I like eating bittergourds, be it stuffed bittergourds , chinese simple stir fry bittergourd with chicken, indian deep fried bittergourd , bittergourd soup or a simple stir fry like this. Not many people will enjoy eating bittergourd i think because of its bitterness, especially children. I have yet to know a kid that actually likes to eat bittergourd. I'm not too sure though of the availability of bittergourds in western countries but for those who have not tried bittergourds, it may not be pleasant for you eating it for the first time due to its bitterness. Some may like to rub some salt into them before cooking to reduce its bitterness and wash off, well  sometimes i do that..sometimes i just dont bother doing in when i'm in a hurry to cook.

225gm bittergourd, after thinly sliced weight, washed and drained
120gms small prawns
1.5tbsp salted bean paste ( tau cheong)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small piece ginger, about half thumbsize
1tsp sugar
1/2 cup water or less
some chopped birds eye chilli  ( if you like )

1. Pour some oil into the wok and saute garlic and ginger for about few seconds and put in the prawns. Let them sizzle for a while in the wok till almost cook and add in the bittergourd and the salted bean paste. Toss them around the wok and stir fry them, splashing some water into it if you find them dry. Can add the chilli here if you use them.
2.Put in the sugar and continue stir frying and adding water little by little, cover them with the wok lid and reduce the fire slightly and cook them for about 5-10 minutes. You can check the softness of the bittergourd after 5 minutes and if it's still hard, you can cover them for additional minutes till they turn a little soft with nice crunch. Taste and add sugar/water  or a little soy sauce if required. Remove from heat.

A few of us in town here met up during last Friday for a dinner. We do meet up sometimes among us and this time we have Veronica @Quay Po Cooks joining us as she had to come to Ipoh to attend another function the next day. So we thought it would be nice to gather everyone for a dinner. Also nice meeting veron's 2 other friends, Peng and Cindy for the first time. Here are some photos to share, some i stole from Veron and Claire:D

Group photo with all my sifu
seated from left to right: ElinCheah, Wendy , myself
standing behind: Claire and Veronica

first dish that we had, some fancy name ..they are fish paste with chicken skin on

Poon Choy

Black Pepper Udons
After dinner , as the night was still early, we went for karaoke...
hmm....lips alike!! Claire said that she doesnt like the wallpictures, reminds her of work!! haha!

look at veron's face...so 'cham' ( pitiful ).. .
..singing 'Tai Lui Far'...haaiz....really cham!

笑到见牙不见眼..promoting Colgate smile!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Pandan and Coconut Checkerboard Brownies

Along with my bake along buddies, Joyce and  Zoe, we are baking coconut checkerboard brownies. I've not done anything checkerboard ..not on cookies, cakes or brownies as i always have the impression that they are a little complicated to make..bake, cut and assemble but always look impressive to me. When this recipe was picked by Joyce, the first thing i did was to look at the number of whisks next to the title. One whisk means easy to make , this recipe indicates 2 whisks..ok, at least not so bad . The original recipe has a chocolate brownies at the bottom and alternating squares of coconut brownies and chocolate brownies at the top. I suddenly have a tempt to make a pandan flavoured one instead of a chocolate brownie... pandan and coconut ..it should be nice i thought.

Hmm..not too bad..quite nice..at least nobody said that it's not nice :) but i think it can be better with some improved version but at this time i dont know what else can be done to make it even tastier. I love the flaked coconut in the white coconut brownie and also on the toppings and the green brownie has a nice flavour enriched by the pandan paste that i used. Actually eating this brownie is like eating those square coconut candies which we can find here, normally comes in pink but this is a little softer. I did however encountered some problems during the baking process..my MISTAKE.. i made the wrong conversion of butter from tablespoons to gram..a lot more butter that i used here resulted in my cake was 'floating' in oil.. after 30 mins into the oven! So much oil! I was staring in horror..it shouldnt be..I didnt even sense anything wrong when mixing the batter..i took the pan out and pour away all the oil and continue baking till complete. Glad i was able to rescue the cake, relieved that the checkerboard pattern did not get distorted and  was actually quite surprised that the cake wasnt that oily as i thought it should have been due to my mistake. So i shall be putting down the correct conversion in the recipe here but if you want to try this, please try at your own risk!! :-D

Recipe ( from Bon appetit Desserts page 589 ) with changes
i made this in a 6"X6" square pan
Coconut Batter
3.5oz sweetened flaked coconut
1/8 cup powdered sugar
1/8 cup whipping cream
1 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
half an egg
pinch of salt

Pandan Batter
45gm butter
1.5oz white chocolate chips
1 egg
2-2.5 tsps pandan paste ( you can put less if you want )
60gm castor sugar
48gm plain flour
1/8 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt

Coconut Batter
Measure 1/3 cup flaked coconut , set aside. Place remaining coconut and sugar in a processor, finely chop. Add whipping cream and cream cheese to processor and blend well. Add egg and salt then, blend well, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Cover and refrigerate until very firm, about 3 hours.

Pandan Batter
Butter a 6"x6" baking pan. Melt butter with chocolate chips in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring until smooth. Pour into medium bowl and cool to lukewarm. Whisk in eggs and pandan paste. Whisk sugar, flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl and sift over pandan mixture. Mix until blended and smooth. Spread 1/2 plus 1/4cup  of pandan batter in prepared pan and cover pan tightly with aluminium foil and keep in the fridge. Refrigerate remaining batter until very firm, about 3 hours.

Position rack in center and preheat oven to 325F/162C. Alternate 1 tbsp remaining pandan batter and 1 tbsp coconut batter over pandan layer, filling pan completely. Sprinkle reserved flaked coconut over white coconut mounds, press gently to adhere and cover pan tightly with foil. Bake 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake until tester inserted in center of pandan and coconut mounds comes out clean, about 40 minutes. Cool brownies completely in pan.

For our next round, we will be making chicken pies as the theme. Linky will be opened from July26th to August01, 2012, all are welcomed to join us and dont forget to link your post back to one of the host's blog ( me, Joyce or Zoe ). Oh, kindly link new or recent posts only. Thank you!!

get the InLinkz code

Monday, July 9, 2012

Nick Malgieri's Old Fashioned Raisin Bread

These rolls were made with pretty much influenced from Joyce. I was chatting with her one day when she told me that she just baked this bread and how wonderful it turned out. You know, Joyce can be so good in her words, so convincing that i was 'sold' by the way she told me. Not only this, i also got much influenced by her for buying books..cookbooks..one after another..until i tell her please dont tell me about books anymore..no budget! Dangerous lady!! haha!

This was made sometime last month. Joyce has already posted hers, you can take a look at her wonderful loaf here. Instead of baking it in a loaf as in the original recipe, i made them into small rolls. Yeah, she was right. It yields a wonderful texture , they are soft and nice and although these are just simple rolls with raisins, i love them very much. There's no fuss in the steps, very straight forward. I forgot what's the weight of each dough i make into rolls, i didnt write it down..sorry..what kind of blogger am i .. but usually i make mine about 60gm each.

Recipe ( from nickmalgieri.com )
this is half of the original recipe
1/2 cup/112gm of water
1.5tsp/5gm instant yeast
112gm milk
338gm bread flour
35gm sugar
5gm fine sea salt/slightly less than a tsp
28gm unsalted butter
1cup dark raisins ( you can use combination of dark and green raisins)

1. Combine bread flour, sugar, salt and yeast together and use a fork to mix them. Using a dough hook running on low speed, pour in water and milk alternately to become a rough dough. Beat them for 2-3 minutes, then put in the butter and continue beating till butter is fully absorbed. Increase speed to medium and continue beating till the dough is smooth about 10 minutes.
2.Decrease the speed and add in raisins, little by little until they are fairly distributed. Remove the dough from the machine and turn them onto a floured surface, briefly knead them and shape them into a ball and let it proof in a bowl until double its size.
3.Turn the risen dough onto a floured surface again , lightly knead them into a ball again and cut each dough out weighing 60gms and shape them into rolls. Place them on a lined baking pan and let it proof for another 45minutes to an hour.
4. Once the rolls are almost proofed, set the rack in the middle level of the oven and preheat oven to 190C.
Put the pan in the oven and bake till they are cooked and slightly brown, about 15-20 minutes.

The method and temperature used here are slightly different from the original. You can refer to the original here

Sharing this with
BYOB Bake Your Own Bread hosted by Girlichef
Let's Cook #17 - Breads hosted by Tickling Palates

Monday, July 2, 2012

Sardine Curry

Some of you may know my love for indian food, sardine curry is another favourite of mine at the banana leaf  restaurant. This is like sardine in tomato sauce but it's a little spicy and carries the taste of indian curry. It is quite different from the usual sardine dish that we can get from the indian mamak stall here, this is more towards a little sour and tangy in terms of flavour of the sauce. Even though this is not a very 'curry' type of curry., i still love it very much and it's very appetising for me. I think it would taste good on roti or any kind of flatbreads too.  If you think it may sounds appetising to you as well, then worth giving it a try ..especially if you are underweight :D..you probably will ask for more rice!

Recipe ( from South Indian Temptations by Devagi Shanmugam) with changes
1 can sardine in tomato sauce ( 475 gm), drained and reserve 3 heap tbsp tomato sauce from the can
3 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp fenugreek
1/2 tsp aniseed, coarsely pounded
1 onion, sliced
1 thumbsize of ginger, sliced
a sprig of curry leaves
21/2 tsps chilli powder
1tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp tamarind paste mixed with 1/2 cup of water
2 tomatoes
1 tsp curry powder
1tsp sugar
about 1 tsp of salt or to taste

1. Heat oil and add fenugreek and aniseeds and fry till fragrant.Add sliced onions, ginger, curry leaves and when they turn fragrant, all in the chilli powder, cumin powder, tomatoes, tamarind juice and curry powder.
2. Let them simmer for about 5 minutes, add in the sardines and the reserved tomato sauce from the can earlier and also 1/3 cup of water for more sauce and cook for another 5 minutes. Add in sugar and salt to taste.Remove from heat and serve.

If you like this dish, you may also like to see my blogger friend, Tigerfish doing a quite similar kind of sardine curry in her post here. Wishing everyone a happy monday!